Andrenid Bee
 
Location: Calgary, AB 
Date: May 8, 2005
               
      Photo 1

Common Name:  Andrenid Bee

Latin Name:  Andrena milwaukeensis  Graenicher, 1903
                        (J. S. Ascher, det.)

Length:  13 mm

Range:  Throughout Alberta

Habitat:  Various

Time of year seen:  Spring to summer

Diet: Pollen

Other:  Andrena bees are a large and widespread holarctic genus, with about 500 species present in North America.  Distribution of individual species is controlled by two factors: 1) the presence of food plants - each species prefers pollen from one or a few plants only and 2) the presence of suitable nesting substrate. (Laberge, 1984)  The bees nest in the ground, with the nest typically consisting of a single vertical burrow with horizontal branches.    (Borror et al, 1970)  The adult bees hibernate in their burrows, becoming active in the spring.  As a result they are quite common in the spring when they are stocking their nests with pollen from spring flowers such as willow. (Marshall, 2006)  Adult bees have a brownish black to dark brown coloration.

 
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